June 26, 2017 | Monday Mycotoxin And Crop Report | | Views: 448
June 20, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 512

Crop Progress Report for Soybeans Shows Improved Ratings

Grains Sunk Lower in the Overnight Session

Crop Progress Report for Soybeans Shows Improved Ratings

Grains sunk lower overnight with soybeans and wheat leading the complex lower.

 

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On Monday after the close USDA released their crop condition report showing corn ratings unchanged on the week at 67% good-to-excellent. Traders had expected the ratings to improve to 68%. For soybeans, the ratings improved slightly to 67% from last week’s ratings of 66%. For spring wheat, another surprising drop as ratings hit 41% off from 45% last week and expectations going into the report which looked for an improvement to 47%.

 

Egypt announced the close of its local wheat harvest on Tuesday, having bought 3.4 MMT of wheat from farmers, Supply Minister Ali Moselhy said, just short of the government's target of 3.5-4 million. Egypt this year scrapped the subsidy it traditionally pays farmers and instead pegged the local buying price to world market prices for the grain, a measure that traders have said removed the incentive for smuggling but left the country with a lower procurement figure.

 

Grain cargo ships in Argentina's main shipping hub of Rosario were halted late on Monday when replacement workers filling in for striking unions walked off the job after receiving threats, the country's export chamber said. Regular port workers were on the fifth day of a wage strike on Monday when replacement workers were brought in early in the day, allowing for the resumption of some loading of freshly harvested corn and soy.

 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 19, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 398
June 19, 2017 | Tech Talk | | Views: 863

CRM: A Love/Hate Relationship - Part 2

Now that we discussed the "hate", let’s dig into the "love" side of CRM

CRM: A Love/Hate Relationship - Part 2

It’s been said, the only thing constant, is change. It couldn’t be more true in Agribusiness. The pace of mergers & acquisitions has increased for both agribusiness and our customers. As this happens, it becomes difficult to keep track of customers and the products & services they use. In addition, grain and livestock producers are holding us to a higher standard when it comes to managing their information. As their business and ours become more complex, customers no longer want to repeat or reenter information. To be effective, our products, services and employees need to be coordinating and working in synch.

Otherwise, your customer might say: “Why doesn’t the sales coordinator know my product preferences? I gave that to my sales person last week!” “Why doesn’t the accounts receivables collection person know that I gave a check to the sales person yesterday? That’s what the sales coordinator told me to do!” “Why does the sales person call on me if I have to repeat it all to her office or plant?” Customers expect us to make it easier for them to conduct business with us.

As we merge & consolidate, customers and the administration of their accounts often change. Economies of scale may allow for your credit processing to be done in a new or consolidated location. You might give up a few of your customers and gain a few from a new sales person on your team. Let me ask, is it faster for that person to go into their home filing cabinet, pull out manual records and send them to you? Or simply, give you access to this customer’s CRM file that is backed up online?

In Part 1, we covered a few of the components about CRM you might not like. Today, we cover those components you love about CRM that helps you become better, faster and more organized for your customers.

Why We Love CRM?

One Source: All information in one place

There’s no multiple files, multiple locations nor multiple people to talk to. All account information is in one place and can be accessed by anyone in your company.

Worried about IT security or confidentiality issues? No worries. These programs can compartmentalize info for an as-needed access for each user in your company. Two critical components to actually realize this advantage:

  1. Everyone has to use it and enter information to make it effective.
  2. Accounting software has to be connected and feed data into the CRM program.

Dashboards: Ability to cross reference information

This is one of the greatest features of the CRM programs for the sales person and their manager. Dashboards allow you to compare and monitor customer, product and sales results that would take too long to process manually. With your accounting program feeding info into CRM, you can now easily sort data into dashboard style pages for quick snapshots. This allows you to stay current on Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s). If a KPI falls outside of parameters, you can quickly dial down into the data to uncover what might be causing this. I admit that I was a spreadsheet junky and poured over large accounting reports for many years. I prided myself on knowing the ins and outs of how to read these reports. Then CRM came along and made it faster and easier with more current statistics. It gave me the ability to connect and sort data that was nearly impossible without CRM.

Automated: forget less – follow-up more

Even if you have one of the most elaborate methods of managing your schedule of calls, meetings and follow-up activities, you can always use a backup method. However, if you are like the majority of us, your home-made territory management methods are lacking and you often drop the ball on coordinating your schedule. Properly used, CRM gives us the ability to not only keep better control of our schedule, but also we can include other teammates in the management of the account. These programs allow you to “Tag” or “Copy” or “Inform” others on the team. You may even enjoy the ability to “Assign a Task”. So, impress your customer with your ability to forget less, personally follow up more and involve the whole team in the account. It might just be the differentiator you are looking for with a customer.

Summary:

When launching a new CRM program, we often promote the positives of the program and downplay the negatives. I think that’s a mistake. Our customer-facing

employees then go out to implement the program and find the launch period to be daunting, information isn’t loaded in yet and they don’t feel comfortable with the validity of the data that is in the program. Keep the vision of what CRM has to offer and how valuable it will be as a resource for everyone, not just managers. Keep promoting the vision of how CRM will give your team a competitive advantage. Help everyone understand the learning cycle on the program.

  • Data will be loaded and accurate eventually
  • Customer info will be accessible
  • Dashboards will make customer management better, faster, easier

Join me next time as I go through best practices on launching your new CRM and implementing a program everyone can benefit from.

June 19, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 355

Hot and Dry Conditions across the Northern Plains of the Dakotas this week

Grains were Mixed to Start the Week

Hot and Dry Conditions across the Northern Plains of the Dakotas this week

Grains were mixed to start the week with corn trading lower, soybeans trading higher and wheat showing only modest gains going into the break.

 

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Private forecaster Planalytics sees US corn yield at 166.9, off from their last forecast of 167.4 two weeks ago and well below USDA trend yield of 170.7. Most areas of the country are doing on par with normal, except for the Northern Plains of SD & ND where hot and dry conditions are taking a toll. Yields there are expected to be 10 or more bushels below trend based on current conditions.

 

For soybeans, Planalytics sees a 46.8 bushel yield for the US average. This is off 0.2 bushels from their previous forecast and below USDA’s yield of 48 bushels per acre. As in the case of corn, the Dakota’s are seeing the most downside in soybean yield based on current conditions.

 

Weather in Western Europe is expected to get turned up this week with intense heat stress expected. Areas of France, England and Germany are expected to see highs in the mid 90s to near 100s for much of this week. Next week should see a return to Normal. In the US, two storm systems will track thru the Midwest this week bringing rain to the Ohio River Valley and Southeast. The second system will bring rains of 0.5 inches to 2 inches from Iowa and Minnesota and up thru Michigan. The Northern Plains will continue to see limited rain potential.

 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 16, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 302

Weekly Cash Comments

Weekly Cash Commentary for week ending 06/16/2017

Grain basis was mostly stable this week for corn and soybeans with neither commodity showing any strong trends on the week. On average, US corn basis was up 0.9 cents a bushel while soy basis was up 0.7 cents.

 

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In corn, basis levels were firmer across the Southern Plains and river terminals this week. The Gulf market inched higher by 1 cent a bushel but river terminals as a group were consistently 2 to 4 higher on the week. Meanwhile, ethanol plants as a group were mostly flat, but there was some higher bids at some plants in the WCB that ranged from 3 to 5 above last week.

 

For soybeans, basis levels at river terminals were a drag on the broader market as river terminals as a group sinking 3.5 cents on the week while the Gulf basis actually was bolstered by 2 cents on the week. For soy crush facilities, the basis was up 2.7 cents a bushel with 5 to 8 cent gains fairly typical across the plants in the WCB.

 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 16, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 256

Grains Continue to Advance in the Overnight Session

July Wheat Reaches its Highest Mark in Six Weeks

Grains continued to advance overnight led by the wheat complex which saw July wheat reach its highest mark in 6 weeks.

 

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The corn market took a wild ride yesterday with Dec corn trading down to $3.88 in the morning opening bell where underlying support is just below at $3.85 but posted a 12-cent rally back to $4. Yield forecasts from private analysts continue to suggest below-trend yield potential and yesterday’s mid-afternoon weather model run produced more warmth and drier weather than previous models.

 

The condition of French soft wheat declined slightly in the week to June 12, with 74% of crops rated good or excellent compared with 75% the previous week, farm office FranceAgriMer said on Friday. The corn crop was rated 86% good-to-excellent down 1% from last week.

 

The latest US model runs continue to show good precip coverage from IL to the East for the next two week period while the Central Plains, Northern Plains and WCB will see limited rainfall. Temperature patterns should follow the rain development with the same areas expected to be dry should see above normal temp readings in this two-week period.

 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 15, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 321

Crude Oil Down this Morning Following Sharp Sell Off

Grains Lower Heading into Morning Break

Grains were lower heading into the morning break with spring wheat continuing its leader role with nearly double-digit losses. Crude oil was also down following yesterday’s sharp sell-off.

 

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Private consultant Strategie Grains cut its forecast for the EU wheat crop to 141.6 MMT, down 1.1 MMT from last month, but still 4% above the 136.1 MMT in 2016, when output was curbed by a poor French crop. For corn, they noted a slight cutback of 0.1 MMT to 60 MMT which would be unchanged from last year. But they noted the weather is set to remain dry in most of the primary corn growing countries and the condition of the crop could deteriorate rapidly.

 

In international deals, the Korea Feed Association (KFA) purchased about 65,000 MT of corn to be sourced from optional origins in a tender that closed on Thursday. South Korea's Korea Corn Processing Industry Association (KOCOPIA) also purchased about 60,000 MT of corn to be sourced from optional origins in a tender that closed on Thursday. Meanwhile, Japan bought 162,000 MT of wheat, of which 98,500 MT was from the US.

 

Weekly Export Sales-

 

 

  Actual

Estimated

Wheat - NC

  373

350-550

Corn - OC

  600

500-700

Corn - NC

   13

100-300

Soybeans-OC

  340

250-450

Soybeans-NC

  314     

100-300

 

 

 

Crude futures edged lower again Thursday, following sharp declines in the prior session, but investor sentiment continued to be battered by data showing that the market remains awash in surplus oil. On Thursday, oil prices tanked by nearly 4% to their lowest level since November, following U.S. Energy Information Administration data that showed the decrease in crude stockpiles last week was smaller than anticipated. Compounding the woes was the unexpected increase in gasoline stocks, surprising many traders and analysts who expected much of the excess gasoline to be mopped up during the U.S. summer driving season. Data show gasoline demand has fallen for three weeks straight.
 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 14, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 169

Spring Wheat Catapults to a New 2 Year High Mark

For the US, weather looks to be hot for the Central Plains and Midwest with temps 3 to 5C above normal for the next several days

Grains continued to move higher overnight with Minneapolis wheat adding 12 cents to yesterday’s 25-cent advance.

 

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Spring wheat prices hit a 2 year high as the market braces for cutbacks from key growing areas in the High Plains. Weather forecasts for ND show no real relief in the 14-day period. Minor storms bringing limited rain are expected this coming weekend and again in another 10 days.

 

For the US, weather looks to be hot for the Central Plains and Midwest with temps 3 to 5C above normal for the next several days. Rainfall is expected in most key growing areas but the WCB rains are expected to be somewhat limited.

 

In China, the government there approved two new GMO varieties - Dow’s Enlist Corn and Monsanto’s Vistive Gold soybeans. China has dragged its feet on permitting new GMO varieties, generally taking 6 years to approve while other countries are more on par with 3 years. In May, Beijing promised to speed up the evaluations of eight US varieties of GMO crops by the end of the month under a trade deal with the US.

 

The Fed will make an announcement today on interest rates, with a widely expected quarter-point interest rate hike. This would push the Fed funds target rate above 1% for the first time since 2008. Market participants' focus will be on signals on the frequency of further hikes and how the Fed plans to unwind its huge Treasury bond stockpile over the years ahead.
 
 

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

June 13, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 171

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